Okagbare arrival boosts Team Nigeria’s U.S. camp, Omotosho decamped
• IAAF dangles ‘big carrots’ for winners
Reigning African track queen, Blessing Okagbare-Ighoteguenor, is expected to arrive Team Nigeria’s camp in Philadelphia, USA, tomorrow ahead of the 2015 IAAF World Relays holding in Bahamas on May 2 and 3.
Her male counterpart, Ogho-Oghene Egwero, will depart Lagos this evening to join the team. But it was not a pleasant story for Nigeria’s female 400m athlete, Omolara Omotosho, who has been sent packing from the camp due to her poor form.
Omotosho was said to have put up a disappointing performance in the 4x400m event during the Penn Relays on Monday. The Penn Relays usually provides a testing ground for various countries making their way to the IAAF World Relays.
An official, who spoke to The Guardian from Team Nigeria’s camp in USA yesterday, said Omotosho ran a poor 57.00 seconds to place Nigeria fifth in the 4x400m relay during Monday’s Penn Relays.
“Omolara finished us here. She ran the first leg of our 4x400m and it was 57.00 seconds, which is so disappointing. She has been sent home and we have gotten a replacement for her ahead of the World Relays.
We placed fifth in that race. Even our 4x100m relay team, which we hurriedly put together, ran a fantastic race to finish third behind Jamaica and USA.
I am sure they will improve on it by the time Okagbare arrives in the camp on April 30 (tomorrow),” the official said. The Nigerian team will depart Philadelphia for Bahamas tomorrow, where the country will compete in three events, including 4x100m, 4x200m and the 4x400m.
The IAAF will pay a total prize purse of $1.4 million for the men and women’s races. The winner of any of the events will pocket $50,000; while the second position will go home with ($30,000).
Third position will get $20,000; fourth ($12,000), fifth position ($10,000), sixth position ($8,000), seventh position ($6,000) and the eight position will pocket $4,000. In addition, the IAAF has put aside the sum of $50,000 bonus for any team that breaks a world record in the Bahamas 2015 World Relays.